May 24th, 2008
02:03 PM ET
2 years ago

Clinton apologizes for RFK assassination comment

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Sen. Clinton listens during a Senate hearing on Capitol Hill Thursday.
Sen. Clinton listens during a Senate hearing on Capitol Hill Thursday.

BRANDON, South Dakota (CNN) – Sen. Hillary Clinton said Friday that she regretted comments that evoked the June 1968 assassination of Robert Kennedy as part of her explanation for why she was staying in the presidential race late into the primary season.

Earlier Friday afternoon, she told the editorial board of the Sioux Falls Argus Leader that "My husband did not wrap up the nomination in 1992 until he won the California primary somewhere in the middle of June, right? We all remember Bobby Kennedy was assassinated in June in California. I don't understand it," she said.

Clinton complained that "people have been trying to push me out of this ever since Iowa" and said that position "historically ... makes no sense."

Later at an event in Brandon, South Dakota, she said, "earlier today, I was discussing the Democratic primary history and in the course of that discussion mentioned the campaigns that both my husband and Sen. Kennedy waged in California in June in 1992 and 1968, and I was referencing those to make the point that we have had nominating primary contests that go into June. That's an historic fact.

Update: During an interview with Radio Isla Puerto Rico on Saturday, Barack Obama reacted to the Clinton RFK comment.

According to a quote released by the campaign, he said, “I have learned that when you are campaigning for as many months as Senator Clinton and I have been campaigning, sometimes you get careless in terms of the statements that you make and I think that is what happened here. Senator Clinton says that she did not intend any offense by it and I will take her at her word on that.”

Full story

Related video: Watch Sen. Clinton's comments to a SD newspaper's editorial board

Related video: Watch Brian Todd's report on Sen. Clinton's remarks Friday.


Filed under: Hillary Clinton
soundoff (937 Responses)
  1. Scary

    And this is a woman you want to run the country? Don't forget her obliteration comment. Come on people, there is a reason Obama is winning.

    May 23, 2008 05:40 pm at 5:40 pm |
  2. Fred in Canada

    This is typical media hype. So what did she say that was so wrong? Only that other campaigns such as her husband's, and Robert Kennedy's went into June. Any other ridiculous inference people make derives from CNN raising a bogus issue. CNN, you've fallen to a new low. Your enmity towards Senator Clinton is so painfully obvious. Shame, shame, shame CNN.

    May 23, 2008 05:40 pm at 5:40 pm |
  3. Jeanne Maloney

    Stop nitpicking. Hillary was just referencing an account. Jack showed lack of judgment in his comments. You're entertainent not news. What a sad commentary when we think even those who we think consider themselves intelligent and objective act as badly as Rush and company

    May 23, 2008 05:40 pm at 5:40 pm |
  4. amko

    Well, at least we now know what she is whising for,

    May 23, 2008 05:40 pm at 5:40 pm |
  5. Terri

    Hillary or McCain

    HELL NO TO OBAMA

    May 23, 2008 05:40 pm at 5:40 pm |
  6. JSF

    What has the mention of Bobby got to do with Obama IN ANY WAY!?! This is a measure of their narcissism that they think everything revolves around The New Man. My God, can she not mention flowers in Tibet without the Obamabots being insulted?

    May 23, 2008 05:40 pm at 5:40 pm |
  7. Hillary is Going Down!

    Hillary supporters can kiss my @$$ again. This is not about Barack. This is about this B and her motives.

    If those thoughts were not in Hillary those words would not have come out of her mouth.

    There were several other primaries season that went to June so evidently her and her croonies have been sitting around brain-storming this issue.

    good bye b

    May 23, 2008 05:40 pm at 5:40 pm |
  8. Brittany, Brooklyn, NY

    This is a disturbing an completely out of place comment on Clinton's part. RFK is my favorite public figure, I have researched and will soon base my college major around this man :political science. I find her comment to be very offending. She continues to make me dislike her the longer she stays in the race. She is fumbling over her words because she DOES NOT HAVE MUCH MORE TO SAY! Stop destroying our party!

    May 23, 2008 05:40 pm at 5:40 pm |
  9. Naptown Greg

    She can apologize all she wants for this, but she knew what she was saying. She has destroyed the Clinton legacy and has turned into a loose cannon that nobody can trust. She is owed nothing other than disdain from anyone. If the superdelegates don't act now and finish this thing, I will really start to question their relevancy in the whole process. END THIS NOW! It may seem curious to her why people want her out, but it seems horrifying to the rest of us that she wants to stay in. Get her out of the Senate too. NO MORE legacy presidencies!!!!!!

    May 23, 2008 05:40 pm at 5:40 pm |
  10. JE NY

    All these negative comments are absolutely ridiculous, and people will say anything to find fault. It is a historical fact, and I thought of it myself when they mentioned going into June for the Primary contests. I think most of these poster like to see their comments in black and white.
    Get over yourselves. Obama can say anything and get away with it, as can his wife. Give me a break.

    May 23, 2008 05:40 pm at 5:40 pm |
  11. Nick

    I hope it happenes.

    NObama 08

    May 23, 2008 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
  12. deann

    I am deeply for sure why Obama and his group are so scare of Hillary will be elected, becasue, she is the real USA president for American Citizen need..

    May 23, 2008 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
  13. sheryl

    What the hell does that mean? Hillary please get out please it's time to go....

    Unite!

    Obama 08/12!!!

    May 23, 2008 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
  14. She didn't mean anything...

    but I do believe she's been using overly dramatic comparisons when it comes to this primary: voters in FL and MI fighting for their votes like in the Civil Rights movement; comparing not seating the delegates to the elections in Zimbabwe. Now the topic: why is Hillary being pushed out. Why did she need to bring one of the most traumatic moments in our nation's history up in a conversation about her feeling "forced out" of a primary. That comment has no place in that conversation. Another overly dramatic thing to say, but doesn't make any sense. I think this will be the last time she tries to spin something with drama.

    May 23, 2008 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
  15. Eric

    I had predicted so many times that this woman was going to use any mean to get what she wants. But not even in my nightmares would I have imagined she could say something like this. She is, and I carefully chose my words, dangerous. She has to step out of the race right away in order to preserve any kind of dignity she has left.

    May 23, 2008 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
  16. David

    Christ, you people need to get a freaking grip. What? Are you going to now say that the air she breaths is somehow a Clinton plot too? How much is Obama paying you to write this crap on the comments board?

    May 23, 2008 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
  17. Tazz

    Now we know the real reaon she is still in the race.

    May 23, 2008 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
  18. Joe

    Keep the Chaos Coming!!

    May 23, 2008 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
  19. opus512

    You people thinking Hillary said this crap on purpose are pathetic.

    You're worse than you claim she is.

    May 23, 2008 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
  20. Kathy Corey

    Senator Clinton didn't misspeak. She answered a question from an Editorial Board with some historical context. She also mentioned other years..when campaigns went all the way to the convention. She has every right to mention anything she wants to mention. Everything is not about Barack Obama...much as the media and his supporters want to make it all about him. If anyone...in the public or the media...bothered to listen to the interview..the entire content of which is on the Argus site...they would know that this is another non-issue being blown up by the Obama media and the Obama campaign. But none of you will do this...because then you might learn something.

    May 23, 2008 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
  21. Bob H in MN

    It is amazing how Hillary is allowed to bash Obama over anything he says that is even slightly controversial. Now we are supposed to believe she is actually sorry for what she said? She is a liar and has been from day one. She is an egomaniac who will do and say anything to get elected. Power hungry people have ruined thius nation and anyone who cannot see that in her is a fool. As for today's comments from her...disgusting and sick! This is what some people want in a president? Give me a break.

    May 23, 2008 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
  22. Rich

    This from the same interview where she accused Obama's campaign of having a record of trying to force her out of the race and that rumors of her as VP are part of this conspiracy. Some Obama supporters have at times suggested her staying in might be bad for the party, but this hardly amounts to anyone trying to force her out, let along Obama or his campaign doing so.

    Clinton, ready on day one.... to play the victim.

    May 23, 2008 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
  23. JRC

    God forbid something happens to Obama, I think they need to take a good hard look at the Clintons.

    May 23, 2008 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
  24. If not Hillary, then Mccain

    .

    Washington, DC- Two veterans of investigations into Communist influence on the U.S. political process will hold a briefing on Capitol Hill to release two new explosive reports on Barack Obama’s ties with extreme anti-American elements, including agents of the Moscow-controlled Communist Party USA. The reports will shed important new light on Barack Obama’s mysterious past.

    May 23, 2008 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
  25. Annette

    Mel, fail for fear is not the answer, then they do win. I understand your thought, but he has every right as an American citizen to be president. If not now, when?

    May 23, 2008 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
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